We’re pretty much satiated by the deluge of spyshots, teasers and leaked images of the F90 BMW M5. Which is just as well, because Munich has finally released full details of its long-awaited super sedan.

It’s been known for some time that the latest sixth-generation model would feature a carryover 4.4 litre twin-turbocharged V8, but we’ve only been getting ballpark figures for power and torque so far. Now we have the final numbers and, well, they’re monstrous – 600 hp from 5,600 to 6,700 rpm and a towering 750 Nm between 1,800 and 5,600 rpm, to be exact.

The increase in outputs come from a thorough reworking of the S63 mill, such as new turbos and a higher maximum fuel injection pressure of 350 bar. The latter enables shorter injection times and improved fuel atomisation, producing sharper engine response as well as a more efficient mixture preparation.

Also tweaked are the lubrication and cooling systems, with components such as an oil pan with a small front sump and indirect charge air cooling that are smaller and more effective than their predecessors, along with a track-ready oil supply system with a fully-variable map-controlled pump.

The cross-bank exhaust manifolds, which optimise the gas exchange cycle as well as the energy transfer from the exhaust gas to the turbos’ turbines, have also been redesigned with the addition of a Helmholtz resonator between the silencers to reduce weight. There’s also a new M Sound Control button that softens the noise coming from the flap-controlled exhaust system.

A new eight-speed M Steptronic automatic gearbox with Drivelogic replaces the outgoing seven-speed dual-clutch transmission. Munich claims that the new unit has smooth start-off and improved manoeuvrability thanks to the torque converter (which locks up as soon as the car pulls away), as well as a wide ratio spread to improve fuel economy. As before, there are three shift programs to choose from, along with paddle shifters.

Of course, the big news is that for the first time in the nameplate’s 33-year history, the M5 now features all-wheel drive, in order to harness the high levels of power and torque. The M xDrive system, as it is called, carries M-specific software with integrated control of longitudinal and lateral dynamics.

In essence, the system is rear-biased, with drive only sent to the front wheels if it senses the rear wheels are overwhelmed. This is in its default 4WD setting; the Dynamic Stability Control’s (DSC) halfway-house M Dynamic Mode (MDM) engages the 4WD Sport mode with an increased rear bias, allowing the M5 to go into a controlled slide with a linear increase in slip angle in conjunction with the more lenient MDM.

Like the Mercedes-AMG E 63, the M5 can lock out the all-wheel drive system, turning it into a full rear-wheel drive drift monster. Unlike Stuttgart’s offering, however, you don’t actually have to be in a drift mode to activate the 2WD setting, although DSC still needs to be fully switched off to do so. Of course, there’s still the rear locking Active M Differential that allows you to pull off big skids.

All this provides the M5 with some truly astonishing performance figures for a sports sedan, blitzing the zero to 100 km/h benchmark in just 3.4 seconds before hitting 200 km/h in a scarcely believable 11.1 seconds. Top speed is limited to 250 km/h, or 305 km/h with the M Driver’s Package.

Under the skin, the F90 gets a double wishbone front suspension with revised kinematics and elastokinematics, as well as a redesigned five-link rear axle. The changes to the latter include stiffer rubber toe link mounts, anti-roll bars and lower wishbones, as well as elastomer mount bearings, an additional steel X-brace and an aluminium transverse strut to improve response.

Aluminium bulkhead stiffening and front bracing also create a more rigid front end, while a wider track improves vehicle stability. For the first time on an M5, there’s electromechanical power steering – the M Servotronic system has Comfort, Sport and Sport Plus modes, as does Variable Damper Control.

Standard-fit 19-inch five double-spoke Orbit Grey wheels are shod with 275/40-section front and 285/40-section rear ZR-rated tyres, and buyers can also specify 20-inch seven double-spoke rollers with 275/35-section front and 285/35-section rear rubber. They hide M compound brakes with six-piston front and single-piston rear callipers, with carbon ceramic discs – weighing 23 kg lighter – available as an option.

Visualising the increased performance over the standard G30 5 Series is a completely revised design, starting with the menacing front end with larger air intakes, M5-badged double-bar kidney grilles and twin strakes on the aluminium bonnet. Along the side, the front fenders, also made from aluminium, feature the signature M gills, while deeper side skirts and sweeping side mirror design are also unique to the M5.

At the rear of the car sits a diffuser carrying the typical quad exhaust pipes and a subtle bootlid spoiler. The roof is now made from carbon fibre, following in the footsteps of the M3, M4 and M6. A new Marina Bay Blue Metallic hue has been added to the colour palette, and there’s also the matte Frozen Dark Silver and Frozen Arctic Grey options to choose from.

Inside, you’ll spot an M sport steering wheel with M1 and M2 mode buttons, now painted red and positioned atop the spokes, ahead of the paddle shifters. Also fitted are M sports seats trimmed in Merino leather as standard, with M multifunction seats with integral headrests, increased side bolstering and an illuminated M5 badge available as an option.

Also to be found is a red starter button, a stumpy gearlever with buttons at the top controlling the Drivelogic modes, as well as the M-specific digital instrument cluster and head-up display. Aluminium decorative interior trim with a carbon fibre-like structure completes the look.

For a limited time, BMW will offer a First Edition model that comes with Frozen Dark Red Metallic paint, gloss black exterior trim, black 20-inch wheels, Smoke White multifunction seats with red stitching, piano black interior panels and a numbered plaque. Only 400 units will be made available from spring until June next year, all costing an extra €19,500 (RM98,600) over the standard M5.




GALLERY: BMW M5 First Edition